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Disciplines > Change ManagementThe 4D Change Project Framework > Initiation

Project identification | Project selection | The Mandate | The Discovery plan | See also


How is the change project initiated? In the 4D process it is through a process of identification and relatively documentation.

Project identification

Potential projects may be found from many sources, including:

  • Changing business goals
  • Business strategies
  • New work in business
  • Known issues and risks
  • Felt pressures
  • Failures and errors
  • Process/work reviews
  • Contract changes

A useful idea is to keep a list of potential change projects. Then when resources become available or when there is immediate need to implement change, the potential sources can be compared.

Basic information should be kept about all potential projects, such as:

  • The issue or problem. At this stage this will be as described by the originator.
  • A simple reference name for the potential project.
  • The source of the potential project, such a a person's name, a committee or plan.
  • The date when the project was proposed.
  • What the project is intended to achieve.
  • The urgency of completing the project. A simple way of doing this
  • A simple estimate of the potential size of the project. A useful way of indicating this is in the (very rough) time it would take to complete, from days to weeks to months or more.

A simple way of keeping this information is in a document table, spreadsheet or database where each potential project takes up one entry or line.

This information should help with selection and other criteria may be used.

Project selection

There may be many different change projects that can be implemented and a deliberate process of selection should be used.

Criteria for selection should be identified,

  • Business priority
  • Benefit opportunity
  • Resource availability
  • Sponsorship/support available
  • Required investment (including people)
  • etc.

A way of assessing via criteria is a matrix with projects down the left side, criteria across the top and scoring in the body of matrix.

The Mandate

The Mandate is often a very short document but which gives you the requirement to complete work at least to Gate 0.

The Discovery Plan

The main activities of the Discovery phase includes review of materials and interviewing stakeholders for information, followed by formulation of the problem and project planning for the rest of the project. The Discovery Plan should be sufficient to identify timescales and allocate resource for this work.

Generally, Discovery should be done within a short period as a key question to answer is ‘is this project worth doing?’ If the answer is ‘yes’, then further investigation and planning may be done in the Definition phase.

See also

Gate 0

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